September 2015 was month three of the World Race for me. I had just spent the entire month in a small village in Cambodia and it was nearing time to move on to the next destination. My squad gathered together in Siem Reap for some development training and a few days of rest before we moved on, and one night my squad mate led a devotional and message for us. She handed out pieces of rice paper varying in color and had us pray and then write whatever came to mind and heart.
After about five minutes of writing, she prompted us to ball up our pieces of paper and have a fight with them. Whenever we picked up a piece of paper and felt like it was the one we needed, we were to keep it. I kept throwing until all the paper had stopped flying, then grabbed the closest piece to me, unfolded it without looking at the long message on one side, and placed it in the white envelope she had handed out. Then she told us to pray about when to open the letter. I started to pray but before I could even get a word out, “the flight home” popped into my head. I continued to pray because that was eight months away at this point. I am so impatient, and did not want to wait that long to open the letter. However, all I could hear was “the flight home,” so I wrote “Open on the flight home” on the envelope, sealed the letter, and held on to it for the next eight months.
The World Race was an experience of a lifetime and one I know God used to prepare me for a life of service to Him. However, as it came to an end in May 2016, I felt myself starting to panic. I had no clue what I was going to do when I got home and knew I did not want to be out of ministry work. For some reason, I felt that if I were not doing ministry work, my relationship with God would falter. I was anxious and scared for the return home, but the day came and I placed a few things in my daypack for the flight: earphones, a letter from my mom, a book to pass the time, and that light green piece of rice paper inside a white envelope from month three.
I waited until we took off, took a deep breath, and broke the seal on the envelope. It took me a second to understand what I was reading. At first I thought I had gotten a letter someone wrote specifically to someone else, then it hit me. This was not written to someone else, it was written to me, from God Himself. Why did I have to wait eight months to open it?
The answer was simple: The timing was not right then.
I didn’t need those words of encouragement three months into the race; I was right in the middle of growing and learning more about God. I didn’t need to be reassured that He wouldn’t leave me just because I was leaving the mission field. I didn’t need to hear Him tell me to stop asking when the next best thing was going to come along, and that I just needed to trust and wait on Him. I needed those words on the flight home, when reality was about to set back in.
I want to share that letter with you! I want you to know that this is a very personal thing for me and that this letter is my prized possession, but I feel, with the New Year starting, that someone needs to hear these words from God and know that He loves you and that His timing is perfect.
So much has happened, so much is going on, yet you continue to say yes to Me. You continue to pursue Me. You continue to seek after My heart! I want you to know I have heard every whisper, every cry and every tear that has strolled down your cheek; it will be used for your good. Nothing goes wasted in My kingdom! I am a redeemer. I am a restorer. I am a fighter. I am everything you need! I am more than enough! In the days to come I want to reveal Myself to you in a new way. I want you to know Me as a Father who has compassion on you. I want you to see the tears of joy that fill My eyes every time you think about Me. I want you to hear the love song that I sing over you continually. You are not overlooked or abandoned. You are My Prize! You are My sweet child. I know the secret desires of your heart. It was I who placed them there. Don’t be discouraged. Do not be dismayed. And stop asking when. Say Lord, I trust you! Acknowledge Me in ALL your thoughts, in ALL your ways, and I WILL direct your path. Every good and perfect thing comes from Me. I say yes to you, My child. I say yes to the promises I have spoken over your life. Get ready, precious one—I am going to take you to new heights. You will go from glory to glory and My mercy and goodness will follow you all the days of your life.
P.S. I love you!
At a time when I was anxious about the future, God told me to simply, “Stop asking when!” At a time when my world was about to be turned upside down by integrating back into American society God said “You are not abandoned!” At a time when I was going from glory to glory, He told me to wait and hold that letter for a time when I was not.
God’s timing is perfect!
James 4:14 says, “Yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes.”
We do not know what tomorrow will bring. We do have a choice, though. We can accept the promises that God has given us today!
I have to remind myself daily that God’s timing is perfect. I have grown up in a world where everything in instantaneous. It is very hard to be patient and wait for something I want, which is why I read this letter from Him every day. He chose the perfect time for me to open the letter and He reminds me of His character and that He is never changing within its words.
Hebrews 13:8 tells us that “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.”
Print this letter out! Hang it on your mirror as a daily reminder that He is good and His timing is perfect. He never changes and He has you right where He wants you. Be patient, just you wait!
Psalm 37:7: “Be still before the LORD and wait patiently for him.”
I would love to hear about a time in your life where you had to trust that God’s timing was perfect please share with me in the comments.
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